by David Guyatt
From The Laissez Faire City Times
Vol 5, No 46
November 12, 2001
It is one of those stories that even the wildest novelists can’t
A group of well placed government bureaucrats and politicians, plus
numerous CIA spooks and military covert ops types shake hands with
the Mafia and agree to do business on the QT. This involves
shaking-down very wealthy figures, dealing guns on the black market,
money laundering and trafficking drugs on a world-wide scale. Along
the way they bleed the assets of numerous banks, bankrupting many of
them in the process. They also involve themselves in Masonic secret
societies and pull unseen strings deep inside
And, of course, they organize a few political assassinations, invoke
some random murders and set alight the fuse on dozens of major
bombing events - just to add zest and confusion.
Everything is done in the name of "anti-communism," and is conducted
under the umbrella of "national security" -- a designation that is
sure to stifle any irksome police investigation that could otherwise
lead to arrest and imprisonment. It also ensures their now decades
old "business enterprise" will continue to prosper without any kind
Welcome then, to the national security ""untouchables"" - a group of
shadowy puppet-masters who practice organized crime on a global
scale in the name of freedom and democracy -- and who often possess
marked Nazi sympathies.
Danny Casolaro, a freelance American journalist dubbed this group
The Octopus. Casolaro was investigating them for their involvement
in the October Surprise story, the theft of Inslaw Corporation’s
smart software suite known as "PROMIS" and their connections to the
Iran-Contra affair involving Lt. Col. Oliver North, as well as the
collapse of BCCI, the global bank dubbed the Bank for Crooks &
According to Carol Marshall, an American writer, Casolaro told
friends that he,
"had traced the Inslaw and related stories back to a
dirty CIA ’Old Boy’ network that had begun working together in the
1950’s around Albanian covert operations."
Marshall adds that,
"these men had gotten into the illegal gun and
drugs trade back then and had continued in that business ever
She adds that Casolaro was also investigating the
Corporation -- a leading international security firm based in Indio,
California. Wackenhut Corp., began life, according to its own
promotional literature, back in 1954 when a handful of FBI Special
Agents decided to set-up a specialist company providing
investigative services to business and industry.
But Marshall and Casolaro may well have been a few years out in
their reckoning on the founding of the Octopus. There is persuasive
evidence that the roots of this group date back to the war or
immediate post-war years. There was certainly an accommodation
reached between the Mafia and the US military by the time of the US
led invasion of Sicily.
In exchange for Mafia help for the Sicily landing, Mafia kingpin,
Lucky Luciano, was released from prison in the US for exile in
But the relationship between the US military and intelligence
community and senior members of organized crime was far more
deep-seated. Lt. Colonel Lucien Conein, a high-ranking CIA officer
stationed in Saigon before and during the Vietnam war, also belonged
to the Corsican underworld, the Union Corse.
This crime clan was responsible for the so called "French
Connection" heroin shipments from Southeast Asia to Marseilles and
then on to the United States during the Vietnam War era. Conein was
so well connected to leaders of the Corsican underworld that when he
left Vietnam, he was presented with a gold medallion embossed with
the Napoleonic eagle and the Corsican crest. The medallion is
traditionally worn by Corsican crime bosses to signify their
Conein is believed by some to have been the inspiration for the
principal character in William Herrernan’s best selling novel,
Corsican. Meanwhile, earlier in his career, Conein had been an
liaison officer with the French resistance during WWII.
Meanwhile, it is a sad fact that the narcotics industry has been
lurking behind almost every major -- and most minor -- wars over the
past five decades.
The war in Southeast Asia that encompassed Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos
and Thailand witnessed a vast explosion in Opium and Heroin
trafficking -- with the connivance of the CIA. Much of this resulted
from the decision to covertly arm, at a cost, local warlords to
fight in the battle against communism. In order to be able to buy
these weapons, local military commanders took control of and
increased Opium production in their region. This was then exchanged
for weapons and the Opium found its way to the US and Europe.
The guns for dope model that developed during the Vietnam war proved
effective elsewhere, too. Similar structures were later developed in
Afghanistan, El Salvador and even up to and including
where the NATO backed KLA trafficked heroin.
But the Octopus does not limit itself to just guns and drugs -- even
though these two do generate spectacular profits. According to Carol
Marshall, there is evidence of an old and deep involvement in
chemical and biological (CB) weapons that may date back to WWII and
the secret Japanese Unit 731 that developed CB weapons in Manchuria.
This connection also revealed, Marshall discovered, the Octopus
connection to the Yakuza -- Japan’s notorious underworld -- in the
form of Robert Booth Nichols.
Nichols repeatedly appears in Marshall’s manuscript because of his
apparent relationship to organized crime syndicates and Mafia front
organizations. Nichols, however, is also a member of the CIA, a fact
he admitted on the witness stand during a 1993 trial for false
arrest. Threatening to subpoena a list of highly placed government
officers in his defense, the trial Judge, Thomas C. Murphy, ruled a
Meanwhile, Nichols continued to maintain a very close association
with Harold Okimoto, Nichols Godfather and member of the Board of
Directors of First Intercontinental Development Corporation (FIDCO)
-- a firm in which Nichols was a principle. Okimoto, meanwhile is
alleged to have been a high ranking Japanese intelligence officer
during WWII -- a post invariably given to senior members of the
One of the principal persons providing inside information to Carol
Marshall was Michael Riconsciuto -- a CIA scientific whiz kid imbued
with marked intellectual abilities who ostensibly worked for the Wackenhut Corporation.
Riconsciuto, who had been close to Robert Booth Nichols for twenty
years, visited a top secret facility with him. This was located at
Alice Springs in Australia and housed, according to Riconosciuto a,
"city of sorts, containing sophisticated communications equipment,
laboratory equipment and other items that he would not define."
This facility was "privately owned"
Riconosciuto told Marshall,
adding that what he had seen there "made him realise it was time to
terminate his relationship with Robert Booth Nichols."
Riconosciuto refused to say what it was that caused his dismay
during his Australian trip, but author Carol Marshall believed it
had something to do with bio weapons that he’d worked on and which
might have had a bearing on Gulf War Syndrome. This illness is said
to have subterranean connections to HIV AIDS and is rumored to have
resulted from the illegal field-testing on allied troops of an
experimental AIDS vaccine during the Gulf war. Were a commercial
company to have found and successfully tested an AIDS vaccine, the
potential profits they could earn would be enormous.
Likewise, the development of a genetically modified killer disease
possesses potential for profits also. During one of her last
interviews with Riconosciuto, Carol Marshall pressed the CIA
scientist to explain his involvement in developing a genetically
engineered biological weapon during his time at Wackenhut.
Riconoscituo explained that he had worked on a "military concept
where you can engineer these biological agents…….you see, a specific
penetration group can be immunized, and everybody else dies."
Riconosciuto, meanwhile, was the first to claim years ago that a
race specific biological weapon had been developed. At the time his
claims received short shrift. We now know, however, that the
Israeli’s have indeed been developing such a device as have the
South Africans. Nor can the allegations of an HIV AIDS bio-weapon be
written off as fantasy.
Dr. Wouter Bassoon - head of South Africa’s military covert weapons
program -- who has been dubbed the "Doctor of Death" by the South
African media, is said to have been involved in the use of the AIDS
virus against enemies by using "infected blood" in "an operation."
Bassoon is also charged with trafficking in
Ecstacy and Mandrax
tablets, money laundering, the illegal administration of truth
serum, conspiracy to murder and murder. Dr. Bassoon had admitted
that his activities were based on a US chemical & biological weapons
"I must confirm that the structure of the project was based on the
U.S. system. That’s where we learnt the most," he said.
Meanwhile, the serpentine connections between South African security
forces and leading figures from the realm of organized crime during
the Apartheid era, can only serve to reinforce the incredible reach
and depth of the Octopus.
How the Octopus gets it profits
A typical scam revolves around the most popular arms for drugs
Weapons purchased years before by the Pentagon are acquired by the
Octopus at "book value" -- meaning the cost of purchase for, say,
1980 when an assault rifle might then have had a price tag of $300
each. In 1990, this cost could easily have risen to $600 each. By
acquiring the 1980 stock at $300 per rifle, the Octopus could sell
it to their "client" for, say, for $700 each -- including shipping -
thereby making a handsome profit of $400 each.
In order to replenish its stock of rifles, the Pentagon arranges to
purchase the current model weapon at the prevailing price -- making
the tax-payer the loser.
The second leg of the arrangement sees the Octopus contract to
purchase the "clients" supply of drugs. The purchase price is set
well below street value, but sufficient for the client to be able to
afford to purchase the arms needed. The drugs are then "cut" and
distributed and, naturally, generate immense additional profits at
the street level.
In this manner, each leg of the transaction makes a bountiful
profit. The last part of the jigsaw is to launder the illegal
profits through the banking system and then invest part of the
proceeds into bona fide businesses.
US Grandees of the octopus
CIA whiz-kid Michael Riconosciuto told author Carol Marshall that
the US government "sanctioned" met laboratories in Fresno, Madera
and Mariposa County in California.
Marshall had been earlier involved in an investigation in Mariposa
County that involved Police Sergeant Roderick Sinclair of the
Mariposa Sheriff’s Department. Sinclair, had according to a number
of witnesses been a long-term user of drugs had, while on duty,
veered the car he was driving across the road and hit another car.
Inside were three US Secret Service men who were all killed
What grabbed Carol Marshall’s attention, however, was the way the
Judge in the subsequent trial appeared to cover-up Sinclair’s drug
habit. The author later realized that a "tentacle of the Octopus had
slithered into Mariposa County" when she discovered that Rod
Sinclair’s father, Colonel Sinclair, had been a military attaché to
General Douglas MacArthur during WWII -- and later supervised
training of Japanese in intelligence methods.
MacArthur and members of his team have long been associated with
Octopus -- perhaps because of the General’s role as Japan’s "Shogun"
after WWII and the inevitable contacts created with the Japanese
crime clans, the Yakuza.
It has recently been revealed that MacArthur appears to have
personally benefited from war loot plundered by the Japanese and
later secretly recovered by the OSS and the CIA. This was in the
form of gold bullion accounts set-up in MacArthur’s name by the OSS/CIA
officer Santa Romana.
Warfare -- each side is set to bleed the other for profit
During hearings in 1987, the Senate Sub Committee on Terrorism,
Narcotics & International Operations revealed a series of "secret
memo’s" written by General Paul F. Gorman who as head of "Southern
Command" commanded the US military presence in South America during
Gorman had written:
"There is not a single group in unconventional warfare that does not
use narcotics to fund itself."
He was referring to the US backed Contra’s supported by
Oliver North and the national Security Council of the US. This was
the tip of the iceberg, however. Every conflict from Vietnam on
through Lebanon, Afghanistan, Croatia and Kosovo has relied on the
guns for drugs equation operated by the Octopus.
One very senior Pentagon source described how this came about to
author Monica Jensen-Stevenson:
"What started out in Vietnam as a neat way to find money to fund
covert operations had developed into a huge industry. The men and
women who are involved, maybe they can’t get off the merry-go-round.
Maybe it keeps spinning faster and faster, they make more and more
money, and even if they wanted to duck out, they can’t."
Theodore Shackley, one of the key
CIA figures involved in covert
operation since Vietnam described in his book The Third Way that low
intensity conflicts are not really fought to be won but to bleed
both sides so as to maximize black market commerce and to secretly
field test new weapons and techniques on a "training battlefield."
The Head of the Octopus?
In her book The Last Circle, author Carol Marshall outlines an
international company, First Intercontinental Development
Corporation (FIDCO) that she said led her "straight to the head of
She then lists the Board of Directors of FIDCO who included
Robert Maheu Snr, right hand man of Mob and CIA-connected Howard Hughes and
Robert Booth Nichols, self-confessed CIA agent with powerful Mafia
affiliations. Among others on the board were Michael McManus, former
assistant to President Reagan and Clint Murchison Jnr., owner of the
Dallas Cowboys NFL football team.
The latter is the son of Clint Murchison Snr., who was one of the
motivating factors behind General Douglas MacArthur’s failed
Presidential attempt in 1952. Muchison senior was also closely
associated at this time with Richard Nixon, who later became US
President and had financial dealings with him that involved Jimmy
Hoffa, a Mafia figure connected to the Teamsters Union.
Others who were close friends of Murchison senior included FBI
chief, J. Edgar Hoover.
That Clint Muchison senior had dealings with the Mafia is
undisputed. For example, 20% of the Murchison Oil Lease Company was
owned by Gerardo Catena, a leading lieutenant of the Genovese crime
family. Of interest, too, are Murchison’s Texas connections.
Investigative journalist, Pete Brewton, in his book
The Mafia, CIA &
George Bush, ties former President
George Bush to leading Mafia
figures in Texas. . . .
October 15, 1996
Harold T. Okimoto, 71, of Honolulu, retired business consultant and
former president of Island Tobacco, died Saturday in St. Francis
Hospital. He is survived by wife Clara Y.; sons Blake T. and Bruce
T.; brothers Thomas T. and Fred T.; sisters Hideko Nagatoshi and
Sadako Okimoto. Memorial service: 8 p.m. Friday at Hosoi Garden
Mortuary. Casual attire. No flowers.